On Tuesday this week half the children from year 5 of Lightwater’s Hammond Junior School visited shops and businesses in Lightwater village centre in an Experience Day, organised by the Lightwater Business Association and Hammond School.
I’ve not been part of the organising team, and so have limited knowledge of the background to the day, or how it fit’s into the children’s school curriculum. All I did was turn up just after 9.0am to watch excited and curious children in their visits to some of the contributing businesses. I did meet Mrs Kay Dunn, Hammond School’s deputy head, and key organiser, keeping the groups of children to schedule.
The contributing businesses to the Experience Day are: George Arthur Butchers, David Martin Jewellers, Lightwater Pharmacy, Pure Hair Salon, George’s Cafe, Duffy’s Budgens, Carson & Co Estate Agents, and Indigo IT.
In groups of five, with an accompanying teacher or adult, the school children visited each of the shops and businesses. I spoke with John Dickinson of George Arthur Butchers, after he’d demonstrated sausage making to one group of children. I think John got as much fun out of the visits as the children. But then John regularly does the same for the local scouts and guides before Christmas. It’s quite a committment by the businesses. For example, David Martin closed his shop all morning to allow him to concentrate on demonstrating his skills in making jewellery. Also, I’m sure the children enjoyed seeing the process of making smoothies at George’s Cafe.
The photo’s of the event don’t properly capture the excitement of the children, or the enthusiasm of staff from the shops and businesses. The event is being run again next Tuesday, when the remainder of year 5 pupils will have their Experience Day.